Srinagar, Sept 28: Unrecognised schools cannot be permitted to function, Jammu and Kashmir High Court said on Monday.
“Section 11 of (Jammu and Kashmir Education Act, 2002). It enjoins that “no private school shall be established, run or maintained without permission”, of the Government or competent authority,” a bench of Justice Tashi Rabstan said while dismissing a petition filed by a private school— Kohsar Public High School, Khag Budgam, seeking quashing of the orders by J&K State Board of School Education as regards restricting affiliation and recognition upto academic session 2016-17.
“It should be kept in mind that Section 11 in unequivocal terms stipulates that it is not only for establishing a private school that a ‘written permission’ is required, but it is even after establishing a private school that a “written permission” is required to be had from the government or competent authority to run and maintain a private school,” the court said, adding, “So, it is not a simpliciter threshold ‘written permission’ to establish a private school and thereafter remain calm and in a state of slumber.”
Referring to Section 11, the court said that one cannot deny that it is a good piece of legislation incorporated and introduced in the Act of 2002.
“It categorically takes care of things at the time of establishment of a school. It ordains overseeing of running of private schools. It stipulates keeping vigil on maintaining of private schools.”
The reason, the court said, being: involvement of the children; their future; and career.
“Section 11, keeps private school’s management on toes. Having said so, petitioner-school cannot absquatulate from the liability, responsibility and duty cast upon it the moment it established the school, to remain active, promptitude and up-to-date in all fields in running and maintaining the school and its management.”
The management of the schools could not have made a “miniature mistake in running and maintaining the school.”
“So applies to respondents. They should not permit any private school, including petitioner-school, to run and function without “written permission” from competent authority,” the court said, adding, “Any deviation thereto also attracts delinquency on those who were/are at the helm of affairs.”
The court reiterated that only those private schools are to be permitted to function, which are recognised, as is provided in Section 12 (1) of the Act of 2002. “This means that the unrecognised schools cannot be permitted to function,” the court added.
Referring to Subsection (5) of Section 12, the court said that the Government is also required to issue notification in Government Gazette, on or before the first day of May every year, publishing List of recognised private schools.
The court said If a private school wants to start a new class or add any higher classes, it is required to seek “prior permission” from competent authority. “Prior permission for adding new class in unambiguous terms is envisaged in Section 15 of the Act of 2002, “ the court said, adding, “It is a basic and fundamental requirement that there should be a “prior permission” for starting a new class in a private school and its recognition as well. Procedure in this regard is to be prescribed by the Government for permission and recognition.”